Psychological Impact of Socio-Political Factors

Custom Student Mr. Teacher ENG 1001-04 31 October 2016

Psychological Impact of Socio-Political Factors

A society is composed of distinct cultures which identifies itself from others. The cultures of societies are distinct and people’s lives are usually patterned from prevalent traditions, practices and beliefs within that culture. Culture could be held responsible in the upbringing of an individual. People continuously conform on the dynamic culture of the society as they adhere on the norms, practices and values. Culture is an ever-changing feature of a society and incessantly develops and redefines attributes based on lifestyles and conditions.

It is influenced by various factors that create sustained tight cultures. This will further result on the variations in cultures of a global society. We attribute cultural differences in its historical and ecological context. Socio- political factors also influenced our culture. These factors influence psychological appendages of an individual. As world trade and globalization are greatly emphasized, interaction across culture is increased and cultural diversity becomes a hindrance to fully achieve its objectives. Socio-political factors are in many forms and are inherently embedded in culture.

These factors play significant role in molding the identity of a particular society. Socio-political factors are founded based on our beliefs and values and our behavioral tendencies and they were accustomed in our daily lives (Schneider, 2004). Stereotyping There were so many social groups in every country and it makes that particular nation a diverse geographic area. We could easily picture a collage of the various social groups but we could fail to include the real identities and configurations of these social groups (Stangor & Schaller, 1996).

We may generate a statement on the perception of the characteristics and utilized it to describe the whole group. For example, Germans are hot-tempered and African Americans are rowdy. This process of thought depicts the conventional definition of stereotypes in social psychology, in which stereotypes are regarded as the main picture portraying the totality or the representation of a particular group of individuals. Stereotyping could also exist in the minds of the persons who are being stereotyped (Stangor & Schaller, 1996). Stereotyping is a type of socio-political factor where we categorized people based on our beliefs.

Perception plays a large part in the social context. Stereotyping is how we perceive people as established by a particular circumstance. In the course of time, stereotypes are considered synonymous to certain constructs that is ordained in the study of stereotypes. Stereotypes are considered as products of categorization, labels, schemas- these constructs tend to overlap each other for they were closely related (Schneider, 2004). Stereotypes is a result of our behavior towards others, it also affect our behavioral patterns toward different kinds of people.

There is a substantial participation of group members in fostering stereotyping in people. Shared experiences suggested that stereotypes grew impliedly when members of a particular group perceived a certain category on the other group of individuals (Schneider, 2004). We think in-groups and out-groups as natural phenomena and we perceive them differently. Categorization of groups evolved into stereotyping. Stereotyping could render negative implications, this includes depriving opportunities to the persons being stereotyped based solely on the biased belief of the one assessing them.

Stereotyping could be an individual problem and shall consider that it is not a shared knowledge, but when the perception was common in all members of the community; its effects become more noxious because it affects the whole society in the same way (Stangor & Schaller, 1996). Stereotyping, therefore, could be looked at two perspectives. It could exist in the person’s mind, as representations of a person’s beliefs and values. It could also be viewed as a piece of society’s social fabric, a part of a larger scale of commonly shared perception of social groups (Stangor & Schaller, 1996).

It becomes a question if the existence of social reality is individualized or dwell as a shared understanding. The particular distinction between the two lies mainly in the assumed relevance of this common knowledge and its importance and impacts on the lives of each individual within the social group (Stangor & Schaller, 1996). Racism Stereotyping could evolve into other socio-political factors that may render detrimental effects. Racism can be widely utilized in everyday life. The concept of racism is negatively burdened, injected with political and moral descriptions.

Therefore, claiming someone to be a racist is considered as inappropriate and even immoral. The definition is inclined for connoting political abuse. The definition also offers significance in the field of academics and raise political and moral argumentation (Miles & Brown, 2003). Racism is the generalized body of information, real or imaginary, pertaining to a person or group of individual that render benefits or gain on the racist and expense on the one being judged (Memmi et al. , 1999). Racism is the mistreatment of people based on their race.

We all belong in a particular race, human race. This resulted from the inequality in the social structures and configurations. It is also a product of inequitable and unequal stratification of economic, political and social means (Sherover-Marcuse, 2000). Racism is defined improperly. There is no established definition for racism, if we would think philosophically, if racism is defined as morally and politically undesirable. There must be a shared understanding on why it is unacceptable. the definition could not established a concrete criteria on whether an account is racist or not.

Utilizing the existing definition, we could be all racists. If the broad definition will be adhered, then it impliedly says that American people are all racists (Miles & Brown, 2003). Sometimes the description on the person being discriminated is inaccurate and they were being judged based on their color and cultural identity. Thus, it result to social empowerment of the racists and the judgments were passed into concurrent society that affects everyone (Sherover-Marcuse, 2000). Sexism Another socio-political factor that becomes a major dilemma in the society is the concept of sexism.

Sexism directs us in the delving into gender studies, but it is a critical issue for it deals with a lot of aspects of gender inequality. Sexism is the inherent belief of the superiority of a particular sex over the other and therefore claims the right to be dominant in society (Curry, 1995). This will lead us in perceiving that in conventional society male is dominant over the female specie. This is evident in our history books and even in the holy scriptures of religions. Most of the messages were addressed to males.

The dominance of males connotes the inferiority of females and the deprivation of prerogatives and rights enjoyed by the other sex. Many uprisings of the women sectors have been accounted in history in attempt in obtaining liberation and equality in treatment and opportunities. For example, the acquisition of suffrage is a pivotal event in women’s history and the ability to participate in major economic and political activity was celebrated by women in the society. Although there are claims that sexism no longer exists in our society.

We could say that it is impliedly manifested through various of means. There were still claims in mistreatment in the workplace and females were not given equal opportunities. Mass media greatly contributes in reinforcing the concept of sexism through the portrayals of women in ads and programs depicting the traditional concept of women as inferior, weak, dependent and as home providers. There is a lack of portrayal of the emerging female specie- dynamic, strong and nurturing. Psychological Impact These socio-political factors have an undeniable psychological impact to a culturally diverse individual.

Each person was raised in a society with inherent culture established that distinguished the group of individuals to other group of individuals. Every one of us is composed of layers of cultural learning ascribed or acquired that make up the totality of our individuality. These layers of cultural teachings were acquired through various influences. Every individual was shaped ethnicity, race, religion, education, profession, organization and parents. These attributes are the primary factors that affect the formation of the individuality of a person.

One’s gender, peers, family and origin are also vital in redefining the one’s cultural identity (Gardenswartz & Rowe, 1998). Because we acquired our cultural teachings in different sources we are programmed differently and were reared heterogeneously. Therefore our individual differences make us culturally diverse. The socio-political factors aforementioned could be well-explained and examined under the specific branch of psychology- Evolutionary Psychology. This new branch of psychology is focused on establishing explanations on mental and psychological traits of individuals.

There is a growing symbiotic and significant relationship between environmental and social psychology. Evolutionary theory is slowly infiltrate social psychology researchers. Evolutionary psychology examines new frontiers with specialty, like the socio-political factors mentioned above (Perilloux & Webster, 2008). It was argued that these factors shaped a person’s psychological mechanisms. It was stated that the concept of self do not exist but it was layers of psychological mechanisms (Perilloux & Webster, 2008). These socio-political factors discussed above are somehow interconnected with each other.

Stereotyping could render significant psychological impacts in the upbringing of an individual. They may obtain wrong information about persons they stereotyped. For stereotypical roles, though shared by a lot of people could not be regarded as true. Stereotyping will reflect implicit behavioral comments like that there are roles more appropriate for men and women. This will create a general perception that some roles are only intended for a particular sex and that the other could not offer strong decisions and capabilities in participating in these certain fields (Swim et al. , 2001).

This also indicates that men are better in male-dominated fields (Swim et al. , 2001). Due to the stereotypical roles and attributes being tagged to persons, they were undermined of their capabilities and capacities. It will also say that women are inferior and passive (Swim et al. , 2001), which is untrue about women nowadays. More women are participating in the fields dominated by male before and show exemplary performance in doing tasks. But the greatest implication would be an animosity for women (Swim et al. , 2001). Because of stereotyping, people will create an attitude towards the stereotyped individual.


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  • University/College: University of California

  • Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter

  • Date: 31 October 2016

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